Actually, this post came to mind after reading Amiey’s post on working after hours, and reading some comments regarding ‘A teacher’s life‘. So, here is my take of the whole thing, and some facts I feel is right, but if you disagree with me, then give me your take by leaving a comment.
There is a huge belief that the teaching profession is EASY. Some say, we get off work early, have so many holidays, and have so much free time to spare. Some even say “Teacher’s makan gaji buta“.
Well, I disagree. Although the general public would see us leave school as early as 1230pm, but no one knows about other work which are not shown. Teacher’s are generally asked to do a lot of paperwork, and at some point normally asked to come back to school during noon or the weekends to do a designated task, such as organizing certain events, or attending meetings. Since there is no allocated working time for teachers, we do get asked to come down to the office/school at odd times, such as weekends, and sometimes have to stay on until 5pm or more. In other words, as long as there is an instruction from the ‘higher’ authorities, we have to make ourselves available regardless of time. The talk about ‘a lot of holidays‘ is also untrue because it is clearly stated in the education circular that teachers can be called back to work during this holidays shall the need arises, and this circular has been used by many heads to re-call back teachers to school during these holidays.
Well, the truth is that there is no difference between a teacher’s social life with other occupation. Like other humans, teachers do go to clubs, party and hang out. I do not consider myself a traditional teacher, and I do enjoy outings and parties or hanging out with friends, although to the traditional teacher, this act would be deemed as unwarranted and uncanny as teachers are perceived as role models. For me, the key is knowing your limits. I always think that after work hours, we should be our own selves.
Urgh… I don’t care about how teachers should be expected to dress outside of working hours, but people perceive that teachers should be always smart regardless of where they are. It’s a pathetic perception actually. My uncle once said to his friend “Don’t see this guy dressed like an ‘Ah Pek’, he’s a teacher” while pointing at me, and this to me clearly shows how I bother not about the dress code which the public has placed for the teaching profession. Nonetheless, I admit that teachers should dress up properly at work, but outside, they can ‘transform’ themselves. As long as they don’t go running naked in public, I think any dress code is okay.
WHY THE TEACHING PROFESSION?
The number of people wanting to be teachers have increased by folds yearly. WHY?
For starters, the pay is good, especially if you compare the stability of the job, and the hours to other professional jobs. Yes, maybe you do get called at odd hours to do work, but it happens occasionally. So, its practically better than being a doctor, or an engineer which has to be on call most of the time.
Apart from that, there is a huge amount of jobless grads, from other fields, whom can’t find a suitable good paying job, which has finally turned to the teaching profession for work. This is actually not a good practice, because people become teacher’s for the wrong reason, but then again… there ain’t enough teachers in Malaysia for the government to be picky.
DO TEACHER’s NEED TO TAKE WORK HOME?
I admit, that at some point in my working life, I have to bring my work home. NOT that I want to, but I have to.
My very own personal policy on work is simple. I shouldn’t bring my work home, and that explains why I am very much lazy to do anything related to work at home. Someone did question why I look so damn free at home a couple of months back, and my answer was a simple “I do not want to do my work at home“… and for that answer, I got a good sum of advice.
Like any other job, the teaching profession revolves on making deadlines and at some point completing task given. Failure to complete a particular task, would result in disciplinary act, or at the very least a good call to the bosses office. With teaching hours generally filled up with explaining and teaching, there is not enough time to complete certain task, most particularly the paper work allocated, and this would definitely results in work being brought back home. Nonetheless, depending on the person, and how he does his job, this happens once a while, and not too often for me.
WHY AM I A TEACHER?
My reason of being a teacher is pretty much simple. It’s FATE. I’ve been through so many interviews, and applied for so many things I could eventually do, but the teaching profession keeps on calling. Like I always say.. its not a dream job, and sometimes I do have reservation on it.. but it does pay for my bills, and at some point.. it isn’t that bad and practically enjoyable. You just need to know how to get over the ‘traditional’ teacher’s perception. After all, this is the 21st century. Teacher’s do not wave the ‘rotan’ anymore. We blog ;P